Ungrateful Records by Pongsuang Kunprasop
14 June – 30 July 2014
Opening reception: 14 June 2014, 5pm
My first exhibition is a retrospective look of my life stories to understand what constructed my identity, my entire being. I have discovered three main factors that influence my behaviors and mentality. They are music, friends and family.
This exhibition is a recollection of random memories being interpreted into record sleeves of imaginary bands. The paintings display what kind of musical genres my stories would be, if they were to be told by notes, chords and lyrics. From family, childhood, friends, lovers to influencing bands, these are stories I try to remember as well as forget.
It started four years ago. After I lost my mother, I began to bury my guilt. I felt that I didn’t care for her enough, and it was too late. There was no return. I escaped by trying to run away, trying to forget. But I ended up causing rifts in friendships, relationships and professional undertakings. My life was hectic, and I carried on with a tangled subconscious.
"Ungrateful Records" is my attempt to re-familiarize with myself by answering questions that I have been avoiding. It’s a confession, an admission of guilt, of my ignorance towards overwhelming love from those around me. It’s a cleansing process through acknowledging my problems in order to finally move on, hopefully, with a clean and clear mind.
WTF gallery pleased to announce a contemporary art exhibition titled “Ungrateful Records” by Pongsuang Note
A semi-public figure at the cutting edge of the fashion and nightlife scene in Bangkok, Pongsuang Kunprasop has spent 12 years creating visuals, delivering concepts and ideas for advertising and helping to market glamorous products and lifestyles. His acerbic commentary on social affairs, ebullient personality and ability to communicate both verbally and visually have enabled him to flit sprite-like between classes and cliques in Thai society.
In a life steeped in popular culture, Pongsuang has become a touchstone for other creative professionals, would-be trendsetters and corporate trend-chasers. But fame and – to a lesser degree – fortune have not brought fulfillment, peace of mind or true happiness. Instead, he has become emotionally guarded, resulting in frequent depression and problems in his relationships with friends, colleagues and lovers.
In 2010, Pongsuang’s mother died of Lupus. Two years later, he came across a picture of his unknown father on the social media. The discovery of his errant father and the sudden loss of the only family member he was close to triggered a desire to re-examine the life he had lived so far.
The exhibition Ungrateful Records can be seen as an attempt to test a view of art that has become rather unfashionable – as a way of healing, of mending the cracks in life and integrating what appear to be disparate fragments; in short of seeing life steadily, as Matthew Arnold had it, and seeing it whole.
Or as Alain De Bottom and John Amstrong put it in their book "Art as Therapy", which tries to give this venerable view a new lease of life for our time, art is not only a tool to preserve life experiences that really matter, but also to fully inhabit and metabolize the negative — and by doing so with dignity and by reminding us “of the legitimate place of sorrow in a good life”.
Ungrateful Records is an art installation consisting of 100 paintings of record covers, arranged as in an old-fashioned (or perennially hip) vinyl shop. Since music plays such a vital part in his personal and professional life, what better way to tell his life story through what appear to be the covers of records, lovingly cherished or scratched and broken, over- or underrated. Memories of childhood, of family, friends and lovers, of rare moments of happiness and events he would rather forget, and of the art and music that have influenced him, all come together to form a seemingly cacophonous but ultimately symphonic portrait of the artist.
As one of CNNgo.com’s “20 Thais to Watch”, Pongsuang Kunprasop has been credited as. After graduating from Silpakorn University of Fine Arts with a degree in Graphic Design, Pongsuang joined Praew Sudsupda magazine as a full time columnist and illustrator (2000-2001) and subsequently he joined several other major Thai magazines including Lips and MTV Trax while working on his own Thai-UK magazine, Supersweet (2004-2007). Together with his friends, he founded a graphic company, Slowmotion in 2005. Pongsuang’s pedigree in the fine arts has led to various illustrious curatorial position such as Elmgreen & Dragset at the National Railway Station (2007), and more recently at ‘Nocturne’ (2010) – a photographic exhibition celebrating music and youth subculture in Bangkok. Pongsuang also runs the eight year running Dudesweet, an indie-electro clubnight, which has a large and growing army of followers in the creative industries.
WTF Café & Gallery
7 Sukhumvit Soi 51, Wattana, Klongton-Nua, Bangkok 10110
BTS: Thonglor Opening times: Tuesday – Sunday, 4-10pm
For further information please contact:
Tel: (66) 2 662 6246, (66) 89 926 5474